Division 53 | Student Mentorship

Student Mentorship

Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology Mentorship Program

The Society of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology (SCCAP) Student Advisory Board is pleased to announce a call for interested mentors and mentees to participate in the APA Division 53 Mentorship Program! The program, which began in 2012, serves to connect undergraduate students with graduate students in Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology programs across the country. We have also recently expanded the program so that graduate students in psychology can be mentored by postdoctoral scholars and early career psychologists. Since 2012, hundreds of psychology students and professionals have participated in our program.
The program offers undergraduate students interested in clinical child and adolescent psychology the opportunity to ask questions and gain guidance from graduate students, while graduate students will offer advice and recommendations on various topics, including the graduate school application process, career objectives, research and clinical interests, and graduate student life. Graduate and undergraduate students will be matched according to their interests, and then provided with email information to initiate contact. Additionally, graduate students can now elect to be mentored by a postdoctoral scholar or early career psychologist to receive mentorship around career development, the job market, and next steps in one’s professional trajectory as a child and adolescent psychologist.

Mission: Our mission is to facilitate meaningful mentoring relationships among Division 53 professionals and students. We believe in the power of mentoring to foster personal and professional development, enhance connections to the child and adolescent psychology community, mutually build professional networks and support systems and, subsequently, provide only the highest level of care to the people we serve.

Vision: For this mentorship program to consistently develop future leaders in the field of psychology who will strive to uphold the values of scientific excellence and a commitment to the wellbeing of children and adolescents across a variety of research and clinical settings
To learn more about the program, please email the SCCAP Student Advisory Board at: div53mentoring@gmail.com
To apply for the program please click on the appropriate link(s) below. Please note, if you are interested in being both a graduate student mentor (i.e., mentoring an undergraduate student) and graduate student mentee (i.e., receiving mentorship from a more advanced professional), you must complete both relevant application forms. 
We will put out a “call” for applications and match mentors and mentees three times a year so please look out for email announcements on the Division 53 listserv. Any applications submitted outside of these three call periods will be reviewed at the following announced due date. 
Thank you for your interest and we look forward to connecting with you!
Undergraduate Student Mentee Application (i.e., I am an undergraduate student and want to receive mentorship): http://goo.gl/forms/a4JAczNSLIg3qsDP2  
Graduate Student Mentor Application (i.e., I am a graduate student and want to be a mentor to an undergraduate): http://goo.gl/forms/HrEr0CaX1454t7jo2
Graduate Student Mentee Application (i.e., I am a graduate student and want to receive mentorship from a postdoc and/or early career psychologist): http://goo.gl/forms/OosN39e9GNGkYDpw1
Early Career Psychologist Mentor Application (i.e., I am a postdoc and/or early career psychologist and want to be a mentor to a graduate student): http://goo.gl/forms/0VA5aawKS6V11q193

Career Columns

In order to highlight the range of possible career trajectories within the field of child and adolescent clinical psychology, we are pleased to introduce our new bimonthly Career Column. Each column features a different child and adolescent-focused clinical psychologist. The columnists describe their current role or roles; the path taken to arrive at their current positions; the training, support, and other experiences they have found valuable; and recommendations for current students.

Jason Steadman, Psy.D, East Tennessee State University

Jason Steadman, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor of Psychology
East Tennessee State University

1. What is your current occupation?

Assistant Professor of Psychology, East Tennessee State University

2. What do you do? / Describe your role

As a faculty member in a department with a clinical, doctoral program, I get to wear multiple hats. I teach usually two courses per semester, lead a busy research lab, advise and mentor undergraduate and graduate students, supervise clinical work of doctoral students, and maintain a small caseload of private clinical patients. I also work in an area with few child psychologists, and because of my affiliation with the university, I am often invited to conduct trainings and give other talks to local child service organizations, like Head Start, a local pediatric psychiatric collaborative, and other related agencies. It is a lot of fun and certainly keeps me interested because there is variety in my day-to-day schedule, but there is also flexibility in when and how I do the work that I do, which allows me plenty of time for self-care and spending time with my family.
3. How did you learn about your job?

An advertisement was posted in the Division 53 listserve. When I saw it, it seemed to be the perfect fit for what I wanted to do next. I likely wouldn't have found the job without Div 53.

4. How have you navigated your career? As in, what was the process that you took to get to your current position?

As someone with a Psy.D., I took a bit of an "unusual" path into academia. I got my degree from Baylor University, which has a top-notch Psy.D. program that creates a nice balance between clinical focus while still allowing ample research exposure to prepare me for academia. But I didn't always want to be a university faculty member. I always saw myself as a full-time therapist. I still love clinical work, but I found that I was someone who would thrive most within a job that allowed me to exercise my creative and scientific side as well as my clinical side. For my dissertation, I created a manualized therapeutic program that I really wanted to continue to explore. I knew I needed some university support in order to best explore that interest. As I moved through my post-doctoral fellowship, I started to see what faculty positions were available that also seemed to be a good fit. My fellowship was a 1-year, primarily clinical fellowship in integrated primary care in Connecticut at an agency called Community Health Center, Inc. It was a supreme experience in integrated care, and now that I've experienced integrated primary care, I can never go back to the alternative. The ease of interprofessional collaborative communication in integrated care was something I never experienced in any other setting. My current position is in an APA-accredited doctoral program that specializes in training students in rural primary care. Thus, when I found out about it, I knew it was the perfect fit for me, because it allowed me to pursue my academic and clinical interests while capitalizing on my fellowship in integrated care. Now that I'm here, I totally love what I do.

5. Are you a member of Div53?  If so, how has being a member of Div53 been helpful to you?

Yes, Div 53 is my go-to-source for evidence-based practice in child and adolescent care. I appreciate the support from colleagues while also enjoying the "pressure" I always get from everyone to make sure we are doing the best work we can. Being a member has also allowed me to make valuable connections with colleagues who, though I have never met in person, I know I can contact when needed for various issues, questions, or just opinions.

6. What is the most enjoyable aspect of your job? Why?

Watching students develop and mature into professional psychologists, and getting to play a role in shaping future therapists. I am in a Ph.D. program with an ample research focus, but I must admit that I do enjoy getting to be the resident Psy.D. I get to advise undergrads who are interested in a Psy.D. degree. I also strive to maintain the roots of my clinically-focused training and I work to remember how that training has shaped me differently than my colleagues. On the flip side, I also get to reap the benefits of my colleague's specific areas of focus and their backgrounds. I get to learn from them, on the job, pretty regularly, which is cool.

7. What is a tough aspect of your job?  How have you handled it?

Being a supervisor for the first time was a challenge. I realized it takes a lot to trust students with your license, and while that part (fortunately) was not the hardest part, I did realize that it is against my nature to make critical comments toward my students about areas for growth. I believe I have found a way to do that so that students still feel empowered and successful in their work, but it certainly is not easy to tell a student they really need to improve or face potentially serious consequences. In handling these challenges, I always strive to remember what I was like as a student and how I would want to hear such news. I also utilize the many basic therapeutic skills I use in everyday clinical practice. It turns out those work well in academia as well.

8. What is one thing that you wish you had known as a graduate student or post-doc/early career psychologist that would have helped you navigate your career?

That you'll never have as much time to read and learn as you do when you're a graduate student, and that you should not pass up on that valuable opportunity.

9. What advice would you give to students (including undergrads and grads) who may be interested in doing what you do?

Get some real-world, practical experience in the field, learning from a variety of mentors. Also, balance your education, getting good exposure to as wide a variety of fields as possible. I can't tell you how many times I have discussed philosophy, engineering, sociology, literature, religion, culture, biology, chemistry, etc in my therapy sessions. It has helped me tremendously to have had a wide-ranging exposure to these topics in my previous education, not only in being able to talk to people about a variety of things, but in being able to simply think about the world from many different perspectives. Without a doubt, this, to me, is one of the most valuable qualities of a skilled mental health professional!

Past Columns

Jessica C. Hauser-Harrington, Ph.D.
Director of Behavioral Science and Research
Family Medicine Residency
St. John Hospital & Medical Center
Detroit, MI

Click here to read Jessica Hauser-Harrington's column

Jonathan Perle, Ph.D., ABPP
Board Certified in Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Assistant Professor

Coordinator of Child and Adolescent Track
Behavioral Sciences – Clinical Psychology
Midwestern University

Click here to read Jonathan Perle's column

Shabnam Javdani, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Applied Psychology
New York University, Steinhardt

Click here to read Shabnam Javdani's Career Column

Jennifer L. Hughes, Ph.D.
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Click here to read Jennifer L. Hughes's Career Column


Kathryn Barbash, Psy.D.
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC

Click here to read Kathryn Barbash's Career Column


Erin Rodriguez, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Psychology,
University of Texas at Austin

Click here to read Erin Rodriguez's Career Column

Melody Keller, Ph.D.
Director, UCSF Youth OCD Intensive Outpatient Program,
Pacific Anxiety Group, Menlo Park, CA

Click here to read Melody Keller's Career Column

Andrea Letamendi, Ph.D.
Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services, Pasadena, CA

Click here to read Andrea Letamendi's Career Column

Pascale Stemmle, Psy.D.
Pacific Anxiety Group, Menlo Park, CA

Click here to read Pascale Stemmle's Career Column

Adrienne Fricker-Elhai, Ph.D.
The Cullen Center, Promedica Toledo Children’s Hospital

Click here to read Adrienne Fricker-Elhai's Career Column

Paula Fite, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
University of Kansas

Click here to read Paula Fite's Career Column

Cari McCarty, Ph.D., Research Associate Professor in Pediatrics
University of Washington

Click here to read Cari McCarty’s Career Column

Greta Massetti, Ph.D., Branch Chief, Research and Evaluation Branch
Division of Violence Prevention, Center for Disease Prevention and Control

Click here to read Greta Massetti’s Career Column

Dan Cheron, Ph.D., Judge Baker Children’s Center / Harvard Medical School

Click here to read Dan Cheron’s Career Column